The visitors gained a bonus point for scoring four tries, and the margin was only reduced to 18 with a last-minute try by the home team, whose Premiership aspirations were vanquished.
The visitors' ambition was apparent soon after kick-off when prop Mike Shelley picked his moment to latch onto a pass from Tom Palmer's well angled run and score the opening try.
It was apt reward for sustained pressure and Gordon Ross converted, and then added a penalty in the 17th minute when Gloucester infringed at the breakdown.
The next Leeds try, on 25 minutes, was a horror show for Gloucester.
Centre Mark Foster missed an easy tackle on opposite man Chris Bell who powered to the line untouched from 40 yards. Ross missed the conversion but at 15-0 Gloucester already had a mighty hill to climb.
Duncan McRae reduced arrears briefly with a well-taken penalty, but Leeds rose to the challenge and flanker Richard Parks bulldozed over from close range after Gloucester had once again handed possession over cheaply.
Just before half-time James Forrester, playing at No 8, zipped onto a pass and raced into the corner for a morale-boosting try. McRae added the extras to make it 10-22 to keep Gloucester just about in touch with their visitors at the break.
Ross extended Leeds' advantage to 25-10 just after half-time when Seti Kiole decided to run from his own tryline and paid the price for being caught and not releasing, and increased it shortly afterwards with another three-pointer.
In between penalties, second row Adam Eustace compounded Gloucester's problems by being sent to the sin bin after 45 minutes for misbehaviour at a ruck.
Gloucester huffed and puffed for the last quarter but failed to find a way through the Leeds defence and when prop Gavin Kerr crossed for the bonus point try on 73 minutes Gloucester were out for the count.
A late try from replacement Nick Wood did nothing to lift Kingsholm's spirits, but the few Leeds fans were rubbing their hands at the prospect of safety.
For Leeds: Tries: Shelley, Bell, Parks, WoodCons: Ross 2Pens: Ross 3
For GloucesterTries: Forrester, WoodCon: McRaePen: McRae
Gloucester: 15 Jon Goodridge, 14 Marcel Garvey, 13 James Simpson-Daniel, 12 Terry Fanolua, 11 Seti Kiole, 10 Duncan McRae, 9 Alex Page, 8 James Forrester, 7 Jake Boer (c), 6 Peter Buxton, 5 Alex Brown, 4 Adam Eustace, 3 Gary Powell, 2 Mefin Davies, 1 Olivier Azam Replacements: 16 Nick Wood, 17 Terry Sigley, 18 Luke Narraway, 19 James Merriman, 20 Andy Gomarsall, 21 Brad Davies, 22 Mark Foster
Leeds Tykes: 15 Iain Balshaw (captain), 14 Andre Snyman, 13 Phil Christophers, 12 Chris Bell, 11 Diego Albanese, 10 Gordon Ross, 9 Alan Dickens, 8 Alix Popham, 7 Richard Parks, 6 Scott Morgan, 5 Tom Palmer, 4 Stuart Hooper, 3 Gavin Kerr, 2 Mark Regan, 1 Mike Shelley.Replacements: 16 Matt Holt, 17 Rob Rawlinson, 18 Jon Dunbar, 19 Dan Hyde, 20 Mark McMillan, 21 CraigMcMullen, 22 Tom Biggs.
Referee: Tony SpreadburyTouch judges: Paul Emerson, Andrew PearceAssessor: Colin High